Thursday, January 5, 2017

Airport manager position needs to be filled at the Salisbury-Ocean City Wicomico Regional Airport

SALISBURY, Md. - The Salisbury-Ocean City Wicomico Regional Airport is looking for the airport manager position to be filled.

Airport manager Bob Bryant left for another job opportunity after 23 years.

And for now, the operating deputy director is in charge of the day-to-day management of the airport.

But they are currently looking for someone who has knowledge on the rules and regulations of the FAA, as well as someone who can make the airport even better.

Wicomico County's County Executive, Bob Culver tells 47 ABC whoever takes over the position will continue on with every future plan implemented, as they will continue to stay on course.

Culver says they are going to leave the applications open until they fill the job. They have about 7 applications in now and they start interviewing tomorrow, January 6th, 2017.

Culver states, "We're anxious to get started and start a new year with the airport."

Source:  http://www.wmdt.com

Columbia LC41-550FG, registered to JMK3 Lands LLC and operated by the pilot, N972JK: Fatal accident occurred January 05, 2017 near Gurdon Lowe Field Airport (5M8), Gurdon, Clark County, Arkansas

James "Jimmy" Kent III 
January 23, 1976 - January 5, 2017

James M. Kent III (Jimmy) was called home to our Lord on January 5, 2017, flying with his cousin and best friend, Bob Kent.  Jimmy was a unique and caring individual who touched the lives of all who knew him. He had a vibrant personality and took fashion cues from no one. No matter where he was, Jimmy lit up the room and had a huge heart. If you knew him, you probably recall getting a text from him that touched your heart. He was a coach in his own right, always encouraging people to “do more and be better”. The way he died is like he lived: he wrote his own rules; he lived life to the fullest, doing everything with a smile, and paving his own way. If you knew him, you loved him.

Throughout his life, he was most proud of marrying the love of his life, Martha Garcia; playing baseball professionally; being a successful land developer; his collection of cars; and getting his pilot’s license and flying his own plane, right until the day he died. He truly embodied the concept of living life to the fullest. 


Robert "Bob" Charles Kent Jr.
November 25, 1980 - January 5, 2017

Robert Charles Kent, Jr. (“Bob”) passed away on January 5, 2017, at the age of 36. A beloved son, brother, uncle, and friend, Bob lived life with a passion that few could match. His brilliant smile and unwavering positivity brought light into the world of every person he encountered. His drive and work ethic enabled him to build a successful commercial real estate company, Kent Realty, from the ground up, and his generous spirit led him to share the fruits of his labor with those he loved. Remembered as sincere, charismatic, and kind-hearted, Bob’s tremendous impact on those around him will never be forgotten.

The National Transportation Safety Board traveled to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entities:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office: Little Rock, Arkansas
Continental Engines; Mobile, Alabama
Cessna Aircraft; Wichita, Kansas

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board: https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf


Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms


http://registry.faa.gov/N972JK 


Location: Gurdon, AR
Accident Number: CEN17FA071
Date & Time: 01/05/2017, 1239 CST
Registration: N972JK
Aircraft: COLUMBIA AIRCRAFT MFG LC41 550FG
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Defining Event: Loss of control in flight
Injuries: 2 Fatal
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On January 5, 2017, about 1239 central standard time, a Columbia Aircraft 400-LC41 airplane, N972JK, impacted terrain near Gurdon, Arkansas, after a rapid descent. The private pilot and the pilot-rated passenger were fatally injured. The airplane was destroyed from impact forces and postcrash fire. The airplane was registered to JMK3 Lands, LLC, and was operated by the pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed at the time of the accident. No flight plan had been filed before the cross-country personal flight. The flight originated from McKinney National Airport (TKI), McKinney, Texas, about 1145 with an intended destination of Macon County Airport (1A5), Franklin, North Carolina. 

According to the air traffic control (ATC) transcript and radar information, the airplane was at a cruise altitude of 17,500 ft mean sea level (msl) when the pilot requested, at 1217:22, an instrument flight rules (IFR) clearance to climb to 25,000 feet msl to do an "equipment test," but he did not specify what equipment needed to be tested. The pilot also provided the controller with the required information for a "pop up" IFR clearance. Radar data showed that, about 1229, the airplane climbed to 25,000 ft; at 1232:21, the pilot requested to descend back to 17,500 ft. Radar data showed that the airplane had started to descend before the controller could clear the pilot to descend to 19,000 ft. At 1233:03 and 1233:17, the controller asked the pilot "is everything alright"? The pilot responded that the airplane was "having a little bit of an equipment issue" and requested to cancel the IFR clearance. The controller cleared the pilot to descend and maintain 17,000 ft and queried if he needed any assistance. The pilot responded that he was "okay right now." At 1236:39, the pilot declared an emergency, and the ATC controller requested the pilot to state the nature of the emergency. The pilot's response was unintelligible. The controller attempted to contact the airplane but received no response from the pilot. The controller asked other airplanes that were operating in the area to try to contact the pilot, but no responses were received.

Radar data showed that the airplane had rapidly descended from 20,400 ft at 1236:01 to 3,100 ft at 1238:13. No further radar returns were recorded, and no distress calls from the airplane were heard by ATC or other aircraft operating in the area. The airplane impacted terrain about 1239.

According to a report provided by the Clark County, Arkansas, Sheriff's Department, an ATC controller contacted the sheriff's department about an airplane in distress. The controller indicated that, at the time of the airplane's last known coordinates, the airplane was 5.6 miles east of Gurdon, Arkansas. The airplane wreckage was located shortly afterward by the pilot of and spotters in an Arkansas State Police helicopter. 


Pilot Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 40, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): None
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 06/01/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 250 hours (Total, all aircraft), 100 hours (Total, this make and model), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft)

Pilot-Rated Passenger Information

Certificate: Private
Age: 36
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Right
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: Unknown
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: Yes
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: Yes
Medical Certification: Class 3 Without Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 09/16/2016
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent:
Flight Time:  (Estimated) 450 hours (Total, all aircraft), 10 hours (Total, this make and model), 1 hours (Last 24 hours, all aircraft) 

According to FAA records, the pilot held a private pilot certificate issued on September 6, 2016, with an airplane single-engine land rating. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on June 1, 2016, with no limitations. The pilot's flight logbook was not available, but a family member estimated that he had about 250 hours of total flight experience and about 100 hours of flight experience in the accident airplane. Also, this family member stated that the pilot had recently bought a "full face" oxygen mask for the airplane and that he and the pilot-rated passenger had attended a high altitude/hypoxia training course about 3 weeks before the accident. 

FAA records also showed that the pilot-rated passenger held a private pilot certificate issued on April 30, 2013, with airplane single-engine land and instrument airplane ratings. His most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on September 16, 2015, with no limitations. The pilot-rated passenger's flight logbook was not available, but a family member estimated that he had about 450 hours of total flight experience and about 10 hours of flight experience in the accident airplane.

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: COLUMBIA AIRCRAFT MFG
Registration: N972JK
Model/Series: LC41 550FG 550FG
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2007
Amateur Built: No
Airworthiness Certificate:  Normal
Serial Number: 41800
Landing Gear Type: Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 06/02/2016, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 3600 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 93 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 418 Hours
Engine Manufacturer: CONT MOTOR
ELT: Installed, not activated
Engine Model/Series: TSIO-550-C
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power: 300 hp
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None 

The airplane, serial number 41800, was manufactured in 2007. Cessna acquired the type certificate for the airplane model from Columbia in 2009, and the airplane is sometimes referred to as a Cessna Columbia 400. A Continental Motors TSIO550C engine was installed on the airplane, and a Hartzell three-blade propeller was installed on the engine. The engine's and propeller's most recent 100-hour inspections were completed on June 2, 2016. The airplane was also equipped with an anti-ice system and an oxygen system.

According to a family member, the pilot purchased the airplane in August 2016. Before the accident flight, the airplane had accumulated 418 hours of flight time. 

A review of the airplane's available maintenance records did not reveal any outstanding issues. According to the records, the airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on June 6, 2016, at an airplane total time of 325.5 hours. 

According to TKI fueling records, the airplane received 62 gallons of fuel at 1107 on the morning of the accident. TKI service records showed that the airplane had an oil change and oxygen system service that morning. 

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: ADF, 181 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 15 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1156 CDT
Direction from Accident Site: 190°
Lowest Cloud Condition: Clear
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 2400 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 7 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: Unknown / Unknown
Wind Direction: 360°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: Unknown / Unknown
Altimeter Setting: 30.01 inches Hg
Temperature/Dew Point: 3°C / -2°C
Precipitation and Obscuration:
Departure Point: McKinney, TX (TKI)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: VFR/IFR
Destination: Franklin, NC (1A5)
Type of Clearance: IFR; VFR Flight Following
Departure Time: 1145 CST
Type of Airspace: Class E

A review of the weather information from of the accident indicated a layer of broken to overcast clouds over Texas into Arkansas. A review of the soundings and the local observation indicated favorable conditions for broken to overcast clouds between 2,000 and 6,000 ft.

Dexter B. Florence Memorial Airport, Arkadelphia, Arkansas, was the nearest weather reporting facility, located about 15 miles south of the accident site. The weather observation for 1256 indicated the following: wind from 360° at 7 knots; visibility 10 miles or more; ceiling broken at 2,400 ft above ground level (agl), overcast at 3,700 ft agl; temperature 3°C, dew point -2°C, altimeter 30.01 inches of mercury. Also, a review of the National Weather Service in-flight weather advisories near the accident site found none that were current for turbulence, icing, or instrument conditions below 24,000 ft. 

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Damage: Destroyed
Passenger Injuries: 1 Fatal
Aircraft Fire: On-Ground
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 2 Fatal
Latitude, Longitude: 33.899444, 93.037222 (est) 

The airplane wreckage was found in swampy terrain that was densely vegetated with cypress trees. The wreckage was in a 4-ft-deep muddy, water-filled crater. Snowfall after the accident covered much of the wreckage. The cypress trees above the crater showed evidence of broken limbs at the top of the trees. The airplane was severely fragmented into small pieces, some of which were scattered beside the impact crater, and a postimpact fire had ensued. The wreckage evidence was consistent with a high-speed, nearly vertical, nose-down impact. The engine was extracted from the crater along with the propeller, which was attached to the crankshaft propeller flange. The propeller spinner was crushed by impact forces but did not exhibit twisting witness characteristics.

The airplane wreckage, engine, and propeller were recovered from the accident site and transported to a secure location for further examination by the NTSB, Cessna, and Continental Motors.

Airframe

The recovered airframe pieces were laid out to examine the flight controls. Due to the severe fragmentation, flight control continuity could only be established from the rudder surface to overload separations on the control cables leading to the cockpit. The aft elevator push-pull tube was found attached to the elevator torque tube, and the elevator surfaces were found separated from the torque tubes due to impact damage. The elevator trim tab was found in about a 16° tab down angle. One of the two speedbrake modules was deployed. The airframe fuel, environmental, anti-icing, and oxygen systems could not be examined due to the severe impact and postcrash fire damage. Cockpit gauges and instruments also could not be examined due to impact and postcrash fire damage.

Engine

The ignition harness was impact damaged. The engine could be manually rotated, and crankshaft/camshaft continuity was confirmed. All valves opened and closed normally. Thumb compression was achieved on all cylinders. Mud and water were expelled from each cylinder when the engine was manually rotated.

All six cylinders remained attached at their respective mounts. Cylinder No. 1 exhibited a large crack between the induction port and the intake rocker box cover. Cooling fins were impact damaged. The rocker box covers exhibited minor impact damage but remained attached to each cylinder.

The engine-driven fuel pump remained intact and attached to its mount on the rear of the engine. The fuel hose fittings were damaged from the impact and had separated from the fuel pump. The fuel pump drive coupling was found intact. The fuel pump operated smoothly when manually rotated, and a small amount of fuel was expelled. The fuel manifold, throttle body, and metering unit were intact. Fuel lines from the fuel manifold to individual fuel injectors were damaged from the impact, and the fuel injectors remained intact in each cylinder head.

The induction tube for cylinder No. 1 separated during the engine recovery, and the induction tubes for the Nos. 2 through 6 cylinders remained attached with varying impact damage. The right and left after-cooler assemblies were not recovered. The right forward induction tube assembly was impact damaged, and the left forward induction tube had separated. The upper deck pressure air manifold tubes were impact damaged. The top and bottom spark plugs were removed and inspected, and each spark plug was contaminated with mud from the swamp water and oil. A lighted borescope inspection was accomplished, and all valves were found to be intact and in place.

The oil cooler was attached, but the mounting base was damaged. The oil sump exhibited upward crushing damage due to impact forces. The oil pick-up tube and screen were impact damaged. The oil filter remained attached to its mount with the safety wire intact. The oil filter was removed and cut open, and the oil filter paper pleats showed no contamination.

The engine was transported to Continental Motors in Mobile, Alabama, for a teardown examination under the supervision of the NTSB and with Continental Motors personnel present. The teardown examination of the engine revealed no mechanical anomalies. For more information, see the engine teardown report in the docket for this accident.

The propeller and turbochargers were transported to Continental Motors for a teardown examination under the supervision of the NTSB and with Continental Motors and Hartzell Propeller personnel present.

The teardown of the propeller and its assembly revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have prevented or degraded normal propeller operation before impact. Preload plate impact marks indicated that the propeller was operating in the normal blade angle range at the time of impact. Blade bending and twisting were consistent with a low power setting and/or windmilling at a high airspeed at the time of impact.

The teardown of the turbochargers revealed no mechanical anomalies that would have prevented or degraded normal turbocharger operation before impact. The right turbocharger compressor housing was bent in a manner consistent with impact forces, and the impeller was impinging on the compressor wheel, preventing rotation. Contact/chatter/rub marks in the compressor housing were consistent with low-speed rotation before impact and a low power condition. All damage to both turbochargers was consistent with high impact forces.

For more information about the propeller and turbochargers, see the teardown report in the docket for this accident.

Medical And Pathological Information

The Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, Medical Examiner Division, Little Rock, Arkansas, performed an autopsy of the pilot and the pilot-rated passenger. The cause of death for both the pilot and the pilot-rated passenger was multiple injuries.

The FAA's Bioaeronautical Sciences Research Laboratory, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, performed toxicology testing of the pilot. No ethanol or carbon monoxide was detected. Amphetamines were detected in urine (6.97 µg/ml, µg/g) and blood specimens (0.42 µg/ml, µg/g). Amphetamine is a Schedule II controlled substance available by prescription in various forms for the treatment of attention deficit disorders and narcolepsy. It is also a common drug of abuse; peak levels in abuse are typically above 0.04 ug/ml in blood and above 10 ug/ml in urine. However, amphetamine undergoes significant post mortem redistribution which may increase central levels (such as heart levels) by 3-8 times.

Toxicology tests were also performed on the pilot-rated passenger. No ethanol was detected. Carbon monoxide tests were not performed. Tetrahydrocannabinol carboxylic acid (marijuana) was detected in liver (0.0827 µg/ml, µg/g) and brain specimens (0.0022 µg/ml, µg/g). Tetrahydrocannabinol Carboxylic Acid (THC-COOH), the inactive metabolite of THC (the primary psychoactive component in marijuana) in liver and brain. However, no parent drug (THC) was identified in brain and the liver was unsuitable for further testing.



NTSB Identification: CEN17FA071
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Thursday, January 05, 2017 in Gurdon, AR
Aircraft: COLUMBIA AIRCRAFT MFG LC41 550FG, registration: N972JK
Injuries: 2 Fatal.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators either traveled in support of this investigation or conducted a significant amount of investigative work without any travel, and used data obtained from various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On January 5, 2017, about 1240 central standard time, a Columbia LC41-550FG single engine airplane, N972JK, registered to JMK3 Lands LLC, Charlotte, North Carolina, was destroyed when it impacted terrain in the vicinity of Gurdon, Arkansas. The private pilot and his pilot-rated passenger were fatally injured. The cross country personal flight was being conducted under the provisions of Federal Code of Regulations Part 91. Day visual meteorological conditions prevailed throughout the area and an IFR clearance was in effect. The flight originated from the McKinney National Airport (TKI), McKinney, Texas about 1145 and was enroute to the Macon County Airport (1A5), Franklin, North Carolina. 

According to preliminary Air Traffic Control (ATC) and radar information, the airplane was cruising level at 17,500 feet MSL when the pilot requested an IFR clearance to climb to 25,000 feet MSL to test some equipment. About 1232, radar showed the airplane climb to 25,000 feet, and shortly afterward, the pilot requested to descend to 17, 500 feet and proceeded to descend. ATC cleared the pilot to descend to 19,000 feet and queried the pilot to ask if he was ok. The pilot responded that the airplane was experiencing equipment issues and requested to cancel his IFR clearance and descend to 17,500 feet. About 1235, ATC cleared the pilot to descend and maintain 17,000 feet and queried if he needed any assistance. The pilot responded that everything was ok. About 1236, the pilot declared an emergency and ATC requested the pilot to state the nature of the emergency. The pilot's response was garbled and not recognizable. As radar showed the airplane in a rapid descent, ATC attempted to contact the airplane without any success. Radar contact with the airplane was lost about 3,100 feet and no distress calls were heard by ATC or other aircraft in the area.

The wreckage of the airplane was located in a dense, tree-populated swamp. Evidence at the accident site showed that the airplane impacted the ground at high speed, almost 90-degrees nose down. The majority of the airplane was destroyed by impact forces and a post-impact fire.

The airplane wreckage and the engine/propeller components were recovered from the accident site and transported to Dawson Aircraft, Clinton, Arkansas.

Newark Liberty International Airport workers' suit says pay was docked for lunch breaks not taken

NEWARK -- Aircraft cabin cleaners at Newark Liberty International Airport have filed a class action lawsuit against the United Airlines contractor that employs them, asserting they've been docked pay for lunch breaks they never took and otherwise cheated out of wages.

The suit seeks class status for 340 employees of PrimeFlight Aviation Services, a Nashville-based company with more than 4,000 employees nationwide. PrimeFlight contracts with United to clean the carrier's jets and perform other ground-support work at Newark Liberty, where United accounts for three quarters of all flights.

The suit, filed Oct. 31 in state Superior Court in Newark, was announced this week by Local 32BJ of the Service Employees International Union, which has been waging a campaign to organize workers at Newark Liberty while pushing for higher wages.

It asserts that PrimeFlight falsely claimed that its low-wage workers had taken lunch breaks and then deducted the break time from their pay. The suit also charges that workers were denied overtime when they worked beyond the normal end of their shifts. The suit, filed by  seeks wages that workers say they are owed. 

"I work hard cleaning United Airlines planes for PrimeFlight," Nicolas Molina, a Newark cabin cleaner and one of three named plaintiffs in the suit, was quoted as saying in the union's announcement. "Despite working full-time, I make so little money I can barely feed my family. That's why it's especially distressing when I am not paid for all of the hours I have worked."

A PrimeFlight spokesman in Nashville, Jim Burnett, did not respond to repeated requests for comment.

Molina, a Newark resident and father of one who has worked at the airport for 11 years, makes $10.10 an hour, the minimum under a wage policy imposed by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey on its tenants and their contractors at Newark Liberty.

Prior to adoption of the wage policy in 2014, dozens of low-wage airport workers shepherded by 32BJ turned out month after month at the agency's board meetings to press for the policy, which was first support by commissioners appointed by Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York and, later, by those of his Republican counterpart from New Jersey, Gov. Chris Christie.

Source: http://www.nj.com

Stewart Airport international official asks Port Authority to restore $20M allocation for federal inspection station

NEW YORK >> The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has removed a $20 million line item from its 2017-26 Capital Plan that had been earmarked for construction of a federal inspection station in the Stewart Airport passenger terminal.

Stewart Airport Commission Chairman Louis Heimbach wants the authority’s board to restore the funding.

Heimbach, addressing the board at its monthly meeting in Manhattan on Thursday, said that when the allotment was pulled, there was no international passenger service in place or on the drawing board at Stewart. But since then, he noted, Norwegian Airlines has announced it will start flights between the New Windsor, N.Y., airport and European cities by mid-2017. The airline plans to base two jets at Stewart.

The federal inspection station would process passengers arriving at Stewart from outside the United States.

Heimbach told the Port Authority board that $20 million is a small amount compared to the $31.6 billion that makes up the capital plan, and he said the money it is essential for Stewart’s international service to be successful.

Stewart will be added to Norwegian Airlines’ route schedule with initial service to Ireland and, eventually, other destinations, Norwegian spokesman Anders Lindstrom said last month.

Lindstrom said Norwegian currently operates 45 daily routes from the United States and is the fastest growing airline in Europe.

The Port Authority has operated Stewart for just over nine years. It also operates John F. Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark-Liberty airports in the New York City area.

The Port Authority’s 10-year Capital Plan contains more than $5.4 billion for work at Kennedy and LaGuardia airports, as well as AirTrain service that will provide rail access to LaGuardia, according to a statement from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.

In all, the Capital Plan contains $9.8 billion for New York projects, $9.8 billion for New Jersey projects and $12 billion for interstate projects, Cuomo’s office said.

The statement from Cuomo’s office praised the capital priorities of the Port Authority but made no mention of Stewart Airport.

Source:  http://www.dailyfreeman.com

Airlines cancel flights in Colorado Springs, Denver amidst winter storm



Some local travelers were in for a rude awakening Thursday morning, when several airlines axed flights from the Colorado Springs and Denver airports due to wet, wintry weather conditions.

As of about 10 a.m., 142 flights departing from the Denver International Airport had been canceled, and three cancellations had been reported at the Colorado Springs Airport, officials said.

Most of the flights leaving from Denver that were canceled were scheduled for small commuter aircraft that serve mountain towns. Many were on regional airlines, such as SkyWest and Trans States, said Heath Montgomery, a spokesman for the Denver Airport.

“The bulk of the cancellations are the aircraft that just can’t fly in these conditions,” he said. “They are not equipped for the poor visibility.”

Canceled departures from Colorado Springs included three United Airlines flights headed for Denver Thursday morning, said Nate Lavin, a spokesman for the city’s airport. All other flights were running on time at about 10 a.m.

Airlines including United, Southwest, American and Frontier have offered to waive the fee typically paid to change flights for passengers who are scheduled to depart from the Denver or Colorado Springs airports Thursday. Travelers can contact their airline directly to learn more.

At both airports, snow and ice removal operations were in full swing. The Denver Airport has more than 250 pieces of equipment—including blowers, brooms, blades, plows and runway sanders — for clearing snow from runways and another 120 units for parking lots and roadways. Winter weather conditions were expected to let up around noon, according to a tweet from the airport.

The Colorado Springs Airport’s collection includes three front-mount plows, three front-end brooms, two 4,000-gallon chemical dump trucks and four snow blowers, capable of blasting upwards of 4 tons of snow per hour. All of the equipment was on the road Thursday morning, Lavin said.  

“We have two twelve-hour teams that are working around the clock to keep our runways open,” he said.

Travelers should check the status of their flights before heading to either airport and allow for extra time to navigate icy roads. Information about cancellations and delays is available at www.flycos.com for the Colorado Springs Airport and www.flydenver.com for the Denver Airport.

Story and video:  http://gazette.com

Delta issues waivers for flights traveling in the Southeast due to weather

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN/WATE) – With winter weather coming this weekend to Middle Tennessee and other parts of the Southeast, Delta Air Lines is helping passengers by issuing travel waivers.

The airline announced that it is issuing waivers for passengers who have flights going to, from or through several airports, including Nashville International Airport.

The waivers only impact passengers traveling Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

The company said tickets must be reissued on or before, and rebooked by Jan. 10.

Passengers can receive a refund for an unused portion of their ticket if their flight was cancelled or had at least a 90 minute delay. Passengers can make a one-time change to their ticket without a fee even if the flight was not canceled.

Affected Cities:

Asheville, NC (AVL)
Atlanta, GA (ATL)
Birmingham, AL (BHM)
Charlotte, NC (CLT)
Chattanooga, TN (CHA)
Columbia, SC (CAE)
Fayetteville, NC (FAY)
Greensboro, NC (GSO)
Greenville Spartanburg, SC (GSP)
Huntsville, AL (HSV)
Jacksonville, NC (OAJ)
Knoxville, TN (TYS)
Nashville, TN (BNA)
New Bern, NC (EWN)
Newport News, VA (PHF)
Norfolk, VA (ORF)
Raleigh-Durham, NC (RDU)
Tri-Cities, TN (TRI)
Wilmington, NC (ILM)

For more information, visit Delta’s website.

Source:  http://wkrn.com

Air Canada employee files lawsuit over lost wages due to psychological injury developed after terrifying flight

An Air Canada employee has filed a lawsuit against the airline and the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal over a scary incident aboard a May 2012 flight from Tokyo to Vancouver.

Kelly Zechel, a flight attendant for 22 years, and others on the plane noticed an acrid smell, like burning wiring, in the aircraft cabin when the plane was about two hours away from Vancouver International Airport.

Searching for the source of the smell as it became stronger, Zechel and a relief pilot pried off one of the panels in the interior cabin. They found no flames, just an acrid smell that irritated Zechel’s throat and respiratory system.

The pilots aboard the plane sought a priority landing and picked up the aircraft’s speed to ensure faster arrival.

One of the pilots told Zechel that F18 fighter jets might be deployed to escort the plane into Vancouver, according to Zechel’s petition filed in B.C. Supreme Court.

When the aircraft landed, fire rescue officials entered the plane and found a visible haze in the cabin.

Zechel and the other crew members were told that the cause of the smell was an overheated entertainment system.

She was also told by one of her colleagues that the reason for calling other planes to escort a plane is to, if necessary, “shoot down” the plane to ensure that it does not crash in a populated area, says the petition.

“Although no escort planes were involved that day, Ms. Zechel was distressed that the situation could have warranted such a response.”

Zechel says she saw a doctor to deal with symptoms she suffered arising from the incident, was diagnosed with a psychological injury from the stress as well as lung irritation, and was off work for more than a week.

Her claim for lost wages for time off work caused by the injuries was initially accepted in September 2012 by the Workers’ Compensation Board, operating as WorkSafeBC.

The airline appealed the decision to the review division of the board, the beginning of a dispute that has been played out over more than four years.

In March 2014, after being ordered by the review division to further investigate the circumstances, the board again accepted Zechel’s claims.

A second appeal to the review board by the airline was denied in February 2015 but a year later, the company filed another appeal, this time to the Workers’ Compensation Appeal Tribunal.

In November, the Tribunal found that the board lacked the jurisdiction to extend compensation coverage to Zechel because she didn’t meet the legal requirements and was not a resident of B.C.

Zechel was a resident of B.C. until 2009 and moved to Manitoba where she began commuting to and from Vancouver International Airport for work, not being paid for her commute.

Such a circumstance is not unusual for Air Canada employees, with a sizable portion of the company’s workers residing in a province other than the province of primary employment, according to the petition.

Zechel, who had compensation claims rejected in Manitoba as well, alleges that the tribunal’s handling of the jurisdictional question, including its approach to identifying the location of her injury while in the air, could not have been contemplated by the legislation for reason of the “absurd” results it would cause.

“For example, an Alberta-based flight attendant that is based at the Vancouver airport would have access to the board if injured while flying over Kelowna but would lose access to workers’ compensation benefits once the plane crossed the border into the United States,” says the petition.

“The decision has left a sizable percentage of the employer’s employees, who reside in provinces other than their primary place of employment, without recourse to workers’ compensation should their injury occur somewhere other than while working in or over the province.”

No response has been filed to the petition. The Tribunal and Air Canada could not be reached.

Source: http://news.nationalpost.com

Complaints about masturbating Delta Airlines 'mentor' got two women fired, suit claims

Two young women who worked for Delta Airlines and a cargo firm at Kennedy Airport say in a lawsuit filed Thursday their bosses spurned their complaints about a male supervisor who masturbated at his desk in their presence and fired them for complaining about it.

Kayla Jenkins, who worked for Delta, and Lauren Heffernan, who worked for a Delta affiliate, Alliance Ground International, were both hired in 2015 as back office cargo agents to deal with freight shipments. The companies assigned a 25-year veteran employee, Mike Keve, to serve as their "mentor" to train them.

Their lawyer Brian Heller says in court papers that in February of last year, Jenkins was sitting next to Keve at her computer when she noticed that he had stopped typing.

When she "turned her head slightly to see what Keve was doing... (she) saw Keve sitting at his desk with his penis out." "Horrified," she turned back to her desk and didn't look at him again that day.

"Fearful of reporting Keve's repulsive conduct to management," Jenkins, 19, texted a female coworker, Heffernan, 29, who also thought she had seen Jeve do the same thing, according to court papers.

The next day, when Heffernan reported the incidents to a boss, she was told that Delta "was already aware that Keve had been masturbating in the office" and didn't intend to do anything about it for fear that Keve, 56, of Massapequa, would lose his job, court papers say.

Another boss told her that he couldn't do anything about it because Jenkins had not complained to him directly.

Heller said that it's "unthinkable" that something like this could happen at Delta today.

"This is something you'd think was a relic of things that used to be," he said.

Heller, a labor lawyer, said his clients' experience is more shocking because an intermediate supervisor confirmed in a text that management was aware of Keve's actions and would take no action.

"This was a group of men who all knew each other for a long time. At a certain point, their loyalty to each other trumped their obligations under the Human Rights Law. It was more important to protect a friend than to protect the women," he said.

In fact, court papers say, managers even joked about Keve's behavior in front of the women, who both come from Queens.

Court papers say Jenkins started to report the sexual harassment in March 2016, but was advised to keep quiet. She was abruptly fired in May when her bosses complained that her schoolwork was preventing her from working enough hours.

A week later, court papers say, Keve masturbated again at his desk in front of Heffernan. Her second complaint triggered an internal investigation that resulted in Heffernan's dismissal after she was late returning to work after lunch because her car broke down.

Each woman is asking for $5 million in compensatory and punitive damages.

Delta did not immediately answer a request for comment. Keve could not be reached.

Source:  http://www.nydailynews.com

Westfield Airport Commission leaves no stone unturned in managerial search

Eric Billowitz interviews with the Westfield Airport Commission 



WESTFIELD, Mass. (The Westfield News) – For the Westfield Airport Commission, the first choice may not have been the best choice but that’s OK.

The Westfield Airport Commission yesterday announced that their first choice for the vacant airport manager position, Marcelo F. Lima of Birmingham, Alabama, had declined the offer for the position made by the city. He reportedly declined for personal reasons.

However, the commission also interviewed a new candidate yesterday and decided to offer him the position.

The commission interviewed Eric J. Billowitz of Florida, New York, in a special meeting last night after he passed the initial stages put forth by the screening committee earlier in the day. After the interview, the commission discussed briefly and decided unanimously to allow the personnel department to proceed with contract negotiations with Billowitz. In a related move, the commission also decided that the other finalist, Robert N. Snuck of Pittsfield, would not be offered a contract if Billowitz declines.

Billowitz faced the same process as the other candidates and was one of the seven candidates originally chosen to be interviewed, but due to prior commitments to his previous employer he was unable to visit and participate in the initial phase of interviews. However, since the process extended, Billowitz was able to interview for the position and the results were highly positive.

“He has an excellent background, has great experience with a range of problems and has resolved them all, and he works well with different entities” Don Nicoletti, commission member, said.

“It was a positive surprise because he wasn’t in the original round but he is a great choice for the city,” commission member William Gonet, said.

Billowitz’s prior experience is based in the realm of business, which is what the commission has desired, but he has a lengthy history in airport management in general.

While still in college, Billowitz began with AvPORTS—the airport management company that is currently providing temporary managerial services for the airport—in 1984 and was with the company until 2016, where he worked at multiple airports in multiple positions. Afterward, he provided airport consultancy with Steven Baldwin Associates, based out of Albany, New York, from 2016 to now, and in 2016 he also provided research and advisory services for Delta Airlines regarding a terminal in LaGuardia Airport.

Among Billowitz’s accomplishments was one that kept him from interviewing for the position during the first round. While with Baldwin Associates, Billowitz’s first assignment had him overseeing a grant application process for a Rochester, New York, airport for $40 million.

“Rochester called to get everyone together,” Billowitz said. “We had six weeks to put together the entire application.”

Billowitz said that they were successful in getting the application in on time and receiving the grant.

Source:  http://wwlp.com

Cozy Mark IV, registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight, N4518S: Accident occurred January 04, 2017 at Napa County Airport ( KAPC), California

The National Transportation Safety Board did not travel to the scene of this accident.

Additional Participating Entity:

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Sacramento, California

Aviation Accident Factual Report - National Transportation Safety Board:https://app.ntsb.gov/pdf

Investigation Docket - National Transportation Safety Board: https://dms.ntsb.gov/pubdms

http://registry.faa.gov/N4518S


Location: Napa, CA
Accident Number: WPR17LA048
Date & Time: 01/04/2017, 1430 PST
Registration: N4518S
Aircraft: SCHOSANSKI JOHN H COZY MK IV R
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Defining Event: Powerplant sys/comp malf/fail
Injuries: 1 None
Flight Conducted Under: Part 91: General Aviation - Personal 

On January 4, 2017, about 1430 Pacific standard time, an experimental amateur-built Schosanski, Cozy MK IV R airplane, N4518S, collided with terrain following a partial loss of engine power at Napa County Airport (APC), Napa, California. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing. The airplane was registered to and operated by the pilot under the provisions of Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 91 as a personal flight. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan had been filed. The local flight departed Napa, California, about 1400 PST.

The pilot, and builder of the airplane, reported that he was practicing touch-and-go maneuvers on runway 24 at the time of the accident. After multiple tours in the airport traffic pattern the pilot noted he would be landing farther down the runway than he desired and initiated a go-around maneuver. As he advanced the throttle the engine started to respond normally, but then rolled back to an unknown lower power setting. The pilot decided to land on the remaining runway but the airplane over ran the end of the runway and came to rest in a marsh area beyond the departure end of the runway. During a postaccident interview, the pilot stated that the engine may have experienced a partial loss of power instead of a total power loss.

The pilot, age 72, held a commercial pilot certificate with ratings for single-engine land and instrument airplane. The pilot's most recent third-class medical certificate was issued on January 3, 2017, which included the limitation, "must have available glasses for near vision." According to the pilot, his flight time included 814 hours of total flight time in all airplanes, of which 331 hours had been accumulated in the airplane make and model.

According to FAA records, the airplane was manufactured in 1991. The airplane was powered by an automotive Mazda 13B rotary engine that was modified by the owner for use in the airplane. The pilot removed the turbo system, which derated the engine to 150 hp. Maintenance records showed that the airplane's most recent annual inspection was completed on July 29, 2016 at 205 flight hours by the pilot, who also held a repairman's certificate for this airplane. At the time of the accident, the engine had accumulated a total of 223 hours total time in service and 17 hours since the airplane's most recent inspection.

An industry expert reported there are approximately 400 Cozy MK IV airplanes in service; however, only about 6 of them are powered by Mazda 13B rotary engines.

Fuel System

The airplane was equipped with two inboard fuel tanks that each held 26 gallons and both were equipped with a high pressure fuel pump. During normal operation, fuel would flow from the chosen tank through a line directly to the fuel injectors at the engine. The right and left fuel lines "T" off and run to a fuel filter, which runs to a primary fuel rail and a secondary fuel rail. The fuel rails return fuel back to the gascolator and the selected fuel tank. If a tank is overfilled, the excess will be expelled through the tank's vent lines.

The engine uses fuel injectors with pulse activated electronic valves to admit fuel into the engine, which can be programmed to increase/decrease the pulse which determines how long the injectors will stay open and deliver fuel to the engine. The airplane's ignition controller manages the fuel injector settings based on rpm simultaneously with the three butterfly valves.

Engine Examination

A postaccident examination was completed by the pilot with oversight from a Federal Aviation Administration inspector. Both high pressure fuel pumps were tested and functioned normally. The fuel filter was free of contaminations. The fuel injectors functioned normally when tested using a diagnostic mode on the engine control unit (ECU) that simulates an engine run at 3,000 rpm. The spark plugs were partially corroded from the engine's exposure to salt water. A test of the resistance in the coils/igniters and ignition harness was performed in accordance with the Haynes Mazda Automotive Repair manual and functioned to specification. The ECU was also run in diagnostic mode with the spark plugs removed and each coil fired, which confirmed continuity from the ECU to the spark plugs through the igniters.

ECU

The ECU was designed to take information from the crank angle sensor, manifold pressure and air temperature sensor from the throttle body and send impulses to the coils and signals to the fuel injectors to moderate fuel flow and ignition power supplied to the spark plugs. A test of the ECU's timing would determine if it was delivering pulses at the appropriate intervals; however, this test could not be accomplished as it was built by an individual who no longer provides this service. The pilot verified that the crank angle sensor was properly aligned and in normal condition.

Apex Seals

Two park apex seals are installed in each of the three corners of each rotor to seal the edges of the rotor. According to a Mazda rotary engine conversion guide, this engine is susceptible to premature apex seal failures, which can be avoided by sufficient lubrication. This particular engine lubricated the apex seals with a two-stroke sump that delivered oil directly to the apex seals and designed to burn with a minimum of deposits, and functioned normally when tested. The top seals from one of the rotor sides was not recovered after the accident. The pilot presumed the damaged or missing apex seal caused the power loss, as the absence of this seal would significantly reduce engine power. 

Pilot Information

Certificate: Commercial
Age: 72, Male
Airplane Rating(s): Single-engine Land
Seat Occupied: Left
Other Aircraft Rating(s): None
Restraint Used: 4-point
Instrument Rating(s): Airplane
Second Pilot Present: No
Instructor Rating(s): None
Toxicology Performed: No
Medical Certification: Class 3 With Waivers/Limitations
Last FAA Medical Exam: 01/03/2017
Occupational Pilot: No
Last Flight Review or Equivalent: 03/26/2016
Flight Time:  867 hours (Total, all aircraft), 223 hours (Total, this make and model), 793 hours (Pilot In Command, all aircraft), 15 hours (Last 90 days, all aircraft), 4 hours (Last 30 days, all aircraft)

Aircraft and Owner/Operator Information

Aircraft Make: SCHOSANSKI JOHN H
Registration: N4518S
Model/Series: COZY MK IV R NO SERIES
Aircraft Category: Airplane
Year of Manufacture: 2012
Amateur Built: Yes
Airworthiness Certificate: Experimental
Serial Number: 0329
Landing Gear Type: Retractable - Tricycle
Seats: 4
Date/Type of Last Inspection: 07/29/2017, Annual
Certified Max Gross Wt.: 2050 lbs
Time Since Last Inspection: 17 Hours
Engines: 1 Reciprocating
Airframe Total Time: 223 Hours at time of accident
Engine Manufacturer: Mazda
ELT: C91A installed, activated, did not aid in locating accident
Engine Model/Series: 13B
Registered Owner: On file
Rated Power:
Operator: On file
Operating Certificate(s) Held: None

Meteorological Information and Flight Plan

Conditions at Accident Site: Visual Conditions
Condition of Light: Day
Observation Facility, Elevation: KAPC, 14 ft msl
Distance from Accident Site: 0 Nautical Miles
Observation Time: 1454 PST
Direction from Accident Site: 74°
Lowest Cloud Condition:
Visibility:  10 Miles
Lowest Ceiling: Broken / 4100 ft agl
Visibility (RVR):
Wind Speed/Gusts: 10 knots /
Turbulence Type Forecast/Actual: /
Wind Direction: 300°
Turbulence Severity Forecast/Actual: /
Altimeter Setting:
Temperature/Dew Point:
Precipitation and Obscuration: Light - Rain
Departure Point: Napa, CA (APC)
Type of Flight Plan Filed: None
Destination: Napa, CA (APC)
Type of Clearance: None
Departure Time: 1400 PST
Type of Airspace: Class D

Airport Information

Airport: NAPA COUNTY (APC)
Runway Surface Type: Asphalt
Airport Elevation: 35 ft
Runway Surface Condition: Standing Water; Wet
Runway Used: 24
IFR Approach: None
Runway Length/Width: 5007 ft / 150 ft
VFR Approach/Landing: Forced Landing; Go Around; Traffic Pattern

Wreckage and Impact Information

Crew Injuries: 1 None
Aircraft Damage: Substantial
Passenger Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Fire: None
Ground Injuries: N/A
Aircraft Explosion: None
Total Injuries: 1 None
Latitude, Longitude:  38.208889, -122.290000

NTSB Identification: WPR17LA048
14 CFR Part 91: General Aviation
Accident occurred Wednesday, January 04, 2017 in Napa, CA
Aircraft: SCHOSANSKI JOHN H COZY MK IV R, registration: N4518S
Injuries: 1 Uninjured.

This is preliminary information, subject to change, and may contain errors. Any errors in this report will be corrected when the final report has been completed. NTSB investigators may not have traveled in support of this investigation and used data provided by various sources to prepare this aircraft accident report.

On January 4, 2017, about 1430 Pacific standard time, an experimental amateur-built Schosanski, Cozy MK IV R airplane, N4518S, experienced a total loss of engine power after an attempted go-around during a touch-and-go landing at Napa County Airport (APC), Napa, California. The pilot subsequently made a forced landing on the remaining runway and the airplane overran the runway. The airplane was registered and operated by the owner/pilot under the provisions of 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 91. The commercial pilot was not injured. The airplane sustained substantial damage to the left wing. The local personal flight departed Napa, California, about 1400 PST. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed and no flight plan was filed.

The pilot reported that he was in the traffic pattern performing touch-and-go landings on runway 24. During approach, the pilot noted that the airplane would have landed further down the runway than desired and he initiated a go-around. As he advanced the throttle, the engine responded normally, but then rolled back to idle. The pilot attempted to land on the remaining runway, but the airplane overran the end of the runway and came to rest in a marsh area.


The airplane was powered by an automotive Mazda rotary engine, which was modified by the owner. The airplane was recovered for further examination.
====

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating Wednesday's plane crash at the Napa County Airport that left the plane damaged but the pilot uninjured.

“I don’t even think he has a scratch on him,” said Winona Boyer, airport administrative assistant.

The pilot, whom Boyer described as an “older gentleman,” is a licensed pilot and tenant at the airport. He flies frequently and has flown the plane that crashed – a Cozy Mark IV – for several years, Boyer said.

The owner said his engine "just kicked off,” Boyer said. The pilot landed in the nearby creek because he thought it would be easier than the runway, she said.

The landing was reported as “possible plane crash” along a departure runway at 2:26 p.m.

Cal Fire, Napa County Fire, California Highway Patrol, Napa County Sheriff’s Office, American Canyon Fire and American Medical Response all responded to the scene.
Get news headlines sent daily to your inbox

“It really made a mess,” Boyer said. “I think it probably totaled his aircraft but he was fine.”

The pilot was the only occupant.

Landings like this are not typical at the airport, Boyer said. The four-seat, single engine, homebuilt light aircraft, like other small planes, goes through annual maintenance, she said.

The NTSB investigates all civil aviation accidents in the U.S. The lead investigator on the case, Patrick Jones, did not respond to Register inquiries Friday morning.


Source:  http://napavalleyregister.com

NORTHERN CALIFORNIA – A pilot escaped injury in a Wednesday afternoon small plane crash at the Napa County Airport.

The crash, which involved only one plane, occurred just before 2:30 p.m. at the airport, located in Napa, according to Cal Fire Capt. Leah Simmons-Davis.

Simmons-Davis said Cal Fire/Napa County Fire responded with three engine companies, one volunteer company, a helicopter and a total of 14 personnel. Medical and law enforcement personnel also were on scene.

The aircraft was a small personal use airplane that crashed in an apparent attempt to take off from the airport, Simmons-Davis said.

The plane landed into a levee adjacent to the airport, with part of the landing gear submerged in water, Simmons-Davis said. The aircraft suffered major damage.

Simmons-Davis said the pilot was the only occupant, and there were no injuries.

She said the crash will be investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board.

Source:   http://www.lakeconews.com

A pilot was uninjured Wednesday afternoon after crashing an airplane while attempting to take off from the Napa County Airport, authorities said.

Emergency crews responded to the call at 2:26 p.m. as the pilot failed to take off and crashed into a levee next to the airport, according to Cal Fire. The pilot was flying solo.


The aircraft suffered major damage, Cal Fire said. The cause of the crash is under investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board.


Source:   http://www.pressdemocrat.com 


The pilot of a small personal airplane was not injured after crashing the plane into a levee while attempting a takeoff at Napa County Airport on Wednesday afternoon, according to Cal Fire.

The aircraft hazard was reported as a “possible plane crash” along a departure runway at 2:26 p.m. Instead of taking off into the air, the aircraft headed into the water. Although no fuel was leaking from the plane, the aircraft had major damage, Cal Fire said.

Source:  http://napavalleyregister.com